August 15, 2011

Starbucks CEO calls for no political donations

Howard Schultz, CEO of the Washington-based Starbucks coffee chain, wrote a letter to company employees criticizing the "irresponsibility among elected officials" and urged fellow business leaders to refuse political donations until a serious deficit plan is submitted.

Schultz, who in the past has contributed to politicians such as Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and John Edwards, further emphasized his no-contributions idea in a New York Times interview on Saturday, telling columnist Joe Nocera:
The fundamental problem is that the lens through which Congress approaches issues is reelection. The lifeblood of their re-election campaigns is political contributions...Whether big donors or small ones, Americans should stop giving and see if it galvanizes Washington to act.
Although Schultz's idea may fall on deaf ears, especially in the wake of the Supreme Court's campaign finance ruling last year, it's encouraging to hear a CEO demand accountable politicians.